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What is Content Marketing?

What is Content Marketing?

Thursday 19th of August 2021

Let’s say that you’re in charge of a toy company and you want to sell as many action figures as possible. Because you operate in a world where technology hasn’t taken off yet, you head to the next best form of content marketing you can think of — comic books! Before you even know it, every kid is scrambling to claim a toy, enchanted with the backstories you’ve created for the characters.

This is exactly what Hasbro and Marvel did when they cooperated back in 1982 to sell their G.I. Joe action figures. By telling a story through their marketing strategy, they were able to create a product that millions of people around the world loved.

So, what’s the big lesson you should take away? At the end of the day, storytelling is ultimately the beating heart of what makes good content marketing. Rather than imagining content marketing as a simple blog post or paid ad, it stems down to the story and the message that you want to resonate with your prospective buyers.

Thankfully, because you do live in the digital age, you’ve got a plethora of marketing channels like social media and the Internet. However, that also means competition is strong and plenty. That’s why here at ContentForge, we’ll help you dive into what exactly content marketing is and how you can craft the best digital marketing strategy for those easy conversions.

Content marketing — what is it?

The best kind of content marketing always boils down to a long-term strategy that seeks to build a strong relationship between your brand and the customer by providing relevant and high-quality content on a consistent basis. Because you’ve won the loyalty of your customers with this strategy, they’ll choose your product over your competitor every time.

In general, customers love to feel like they have a guiding voice in the direction of the brand and will grant you their support if you give them a say. By using the power of content marketing, you’ll be able to capture their attention in conveying your expertise and showing that you place a value in them beyond profit alone.

Why is content marketing so important?

Beyond the human side of things alone, the benefits of content marketing come out in full force through the numbers. Businesses who simply create their own blog pages enjoy nearly 67% more leads than businesses without. On top of that, 47% of buyers view anywhere between 3 to 5 pieces of content before even considering speaking with a sales rep.

No matter where your business is, even the simple act of creating a blog page can make a huge difference. That alone shows the raw potential you can harness as you further explore what content marketing can do.

How content marketing works

As you might already know, your customers aren’t all at the same point along the sales funnel. Perhaps some of them are at one end and have just gotten a taste of your brand, while others are on the opposite side and are ready to make that purchase. You can use content marketing to ease them all along. Let’s take a closer look at each specific step:

Awareness

At this stage, you’ll want to be extremely relatable and educational to engage with your audience. This includes targeting their challenges and pain points to reel them in through the use of blog posts, articles, and newsletters. You don’t want to be too salesy until the closing of the content.

Examples

  • A cruise company publishes a blog post about the hottest destinations of the summer to visit for a relaxing vacation.
  • A sports bar company releases an article about the best ways marathon runners can fuel themselves before and after a hard workout.

Consideration

Your prospective customer already has an awareness of your brand and recognizes that you resonate with their problems on some level. Now it’s time to entice them with a potential solution and what they should look out for as they probe options for their solution. You’ll obviously want them to pick the solution your brand offers in the end, but it’s still key to be informative at this stage. Now, your content can begin to offer more specific how-to blog posts, case studies, worksheets, and more.

Examples

  • A supplement company creates a checklist that asks the reader to look for and avoid a bunch of features when looking for a product.
  • A real estate firm releases a case study about some of the biggest mistakes people have made when they sought to hire a real estate agent.

Closing

Hammering the closing is all about displaying your best sales chops while emphasizing your expertise at the same time. The most important thing is to show off how your product or service is different from your competition. Research reports or user-generated content can speak for itself when displaying what the results of your product had for past clients and customers.

Examples

  • A digital marketing agency creates a video that highlights its portfolio and the list of notable clients that its services have benefited.
  • A clothing company makes an infographic that compiles some of its strongest testimonials from previous customers.

How to get started with content marketing

Even though content marketing might sound overwhelming to tackle in the grand schemes of a marketing campaign, this process can easily be broken down into several steps:

  1. Develop buyer personas. You can’t create good content nor sell a product successfully if you don’t know who your customer is. By creating various buyer personas, you’ll be able to directly target their preferences and pain points. This helps you determine what to prioritize in your marketing strategy right away.
  2. Figure out the format. Like we talked about before with the sales funnel, you’ll want to select content formats that align with each stage. Assess what your business budget is and what your team is capable of taking on.
  3. Determine who will create the content. You can have someone on your team craft the content, outsource it to sites like Fiverr, or easily hire an AI-powered copywriting assistant to forge the words for you. Never forget to proofread before you publish.
  4. Decide on the platforms. This is where you’ll finalize the platforms you want to post the content on, be it through social media, your website, or through an email newsletter. You’ll want to know the platforms your audience likes to be on through the buyer personas you’ve created. Once you’ve decided, you should optimize your content and posts with good SEO and keyword research practices.
  5. Follow through with consistency and modification. Consistency is key in building a loyal audience. Follow through with your initial strategy for a few weeks and see what works and doesn’t work. As you make changes and increase your budget, you’ll be able to create a robust content calendar that keeps you accountable and never lets you down.

Let your content shine

Content marketing can truly emphasize what makes your brand unique and worthy of a customer’s attention. By putting in the right effort and providing value, you’ll be able to elevate your business to the next level. To learn more about how ContentForge’s AI-powered copywriting assistant can help you overcome writer’s block and create high-quality content in an instant, try it out for free today.

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